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Subject: Jeff Beck vs Jimmy Page  

Hey, Bart!

Hope the past Thanksgiving was great for you.

Saw your bit about seeing the Jeff Beck concert, and having seen the man myself,
I agree he's a phenomenal guitar player.

I saw him in the rain with Jonny Lang as the opener. I'm a sucker for West Texas style
blues players, and I thought, well, Jonny was great, and what more could Jeff do than THAT?!?!

I soon found out. The guy's a legend for a good reason! In his hands, the guitar can sing with a
human voice, or become an orchestra, and it seems he can play anything from opera to funk to
the blues to the Beatles, you name it.

Now, I could be wrong, but I **thought** you were dissing him back when he got into the
R&R Hall of Fame, and had Jimmy Page (his close friend forever, I hear) introduce him.
(It was Page who got Beck the Yardbirds gig when he turned them down at first, recommending Beck.)
Something about Beck not being in Page's league (although he is as a player if not as a commercial success
or in terms of his albums).

A movie called A Film About Jimi Hendrix had recollections of the great musicians of the day
discussing their reactions to Jimi. Peter Townsend said that he called up Beck, and said that Hendrix
was STEALING all the feedback playing that Jeff Beck had INVENTED, and that it was a disgrace.
(BECK INVENTED PLAYING FEEDBACK?!?! I guess so!)

John Lennon had feedback on "I Feel Fine" from 1964

So, Beck's a monster player, obviously.

Now for Page. I LOVE me some Zepp, and Page is an awesome player, no doubt. (Although it was a
little rude to steal all those old Willie Dixon blues tunes and put his name on those songs as the song-writer.)
HOWSOMEVER, as much as Page's group work is among the best ever, and Zeppelin among the best bands
(and more successful bands) ever, what you criticized Eddie Van Halen for saying is also absolutely true.

Page did some very mediocre, and sometimes even bad, playing during live shows. (This isn't the worst thing
to say about musicians, IMO-- the Stones were known as a bad live band for a long time, their first live album
totally sucked, until Get Your Ya-Yas Out proved they could play great live at least sometimes. Hendrix himself
often played out of tune.)

Case in point: The BBC Sessions, and specifically, Dazed and Confused, for starters. These recently made
the juke box at the pool hall, so of course, I played all of it. D&C starts well, but ends in about 12 minutes of
what is crap to my ears. Just about the undisciplined noodling of a retarded 6-year-old, just as EVH said.

It is SO bad that even I can't take it, and my slightly older hitting partner wanted to walk out and quit for
the night behind the non-musical noises. I think Jimmy was getting into bowing his guitar, which is sometimes
cool, but in this case extremely self-indulgent.

BTW, guitarists seem fairly critical of each other. I got a magazine about the best guitarists of all time,
the legends, and you should read how they diss each other. The old Deep Purple guitarist, Ritchie Blackmore,
whose playing I also like a lot offered as to how he thought Jimi Hendrix was mediocre and couldn't really play?!?!?!
And that all the players now sounded like Eddie Van Halen, but faster (he didn't like EVH a bit, either).

Anyway, my 200 cents worth, having gone on a bit.

Best regards,
 Phil

Phil, the problem is you're so fucking stupid, you don't know anything about music.

Just kidding, of course.
I was poking those who attack me personally for wanting bomb-free flights.

Jimi was a great guitarist - in 1969.
If he had lived, would he be playing those same songs the same way today?
Eddie is another one - he has one style and one speed and that's it.

Have you ever heard Jimi or Eddie play something "beautiful?"

Go to Youtube.com and search for "shredding."
You find dozens if not hundreds of teenagers who can play really fast, like Eddie.
You won't find one who can play like Page.

Put on Zeppelin's last planned album, "In Thru the Outdoor" and listen as Page zooms thru
hard rock, salsa, reggae, then country, then more hard rock, then a sweet ballad then
hard-as-diamonds blues.   Nobody can do what Page does and nobody does it better live.

Sure, a guitar teacher is probably going to give Beck a higher grade for technicality
but Jeff Beck can't bring 77,000 screaming people to their knees like Page did.

Page is the most EXCITING guitar player ever and that's what *I* look for.

If you think Page live sounds like the
undisciplined noodling of a retarded 6-year-old<>,
I'm not going to argue with you. I just feel bad that you're missing out.
(I wonder how many days it would take Van Halen to draw 77,000 fans...)

There are people who said the Beatles were just kids with long hair singing "Yeah, yeah, yeah."
There are people who consider the Grand Canyon to be "a big hole in the ground."

Jimmy is about to release an album he calls "radical," followed by a tour.
The more people who think Page plays retarded, the easier it'll be for us to get tickets.

Thanks for all you do, Phil the Senior Pillar.


 

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